The Housatonic Community College (HCC) and Gateway Community College (GCC) chapters of Phi Theta Kappa attained the prestigious Five-Star Chapter status, the highest level of achievement offered by the international honor society for two-year colleges.
Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) chapters follow a Five-Star Chapter Plan, which offers a blueprint for building active, engaged chapters. To earn the ranking, chapters must meet rigorous requirements, including a College Project, an Honors in Action Project, and getting involved at the regional and international level.
HCC’s Chi Rho Chapter earned the Five-Star Chapter ranking for a fifth straight year, with a College Project that focused on helping Veterans both on campus and at Bridgeport’s Homes For the Brave Female Soldiers: Forgotten Heroes, Connecticut’s first and only transitional housing program exclusively for homeless female Veterans and their children. For this year’s entry into the Honors in Action Project, Chi Rho submitted “Channels of Creativity” focusing on the therapeutic benefits of music, art and dance.
Ranked as a Five-Star Chapter for a second time, GCC’s Alpha Xi Theta chapter was recognized for its work with at-risk students in the Gateway to College program, earning the chapter a Distinguished College Project Award. The chapter also earned third place in the Distinguished Honors in Action Project Award for its efforts to transform healthy food choices among college students.
Additional Alpha Xi Theta honors included Distinguished Chapter Award, Distinguished Chapter Advisor Team Award and Reach Award. Internationally, the GCC chapter was named among the Top 100 Chapters out of 1250 chapters worldwide at the first-ever virtual PTK Catalyst Convention held on April 16–17.
High-achiever Rahteisha Pittman, held simultaneous positions as GCC’s PTK chapter president and president of the New England region of the honor society. Under her leadership, the Region earned a Five-Star Region ranking for the first time in its history.
“I’m very proud of our work,” said Pittman, who graduates in May with a degree in Nursing. “For me it was an honor to be a part of PTK. All members must have a GPA of at least 3.5 and there was a feeling of family. I’ve made friends locally, regionally and internationally, and have grown through getting involved.”
Outstanding students from both the HCC and GCC chapters were named All-CT Team members, which recognizes the scholarly achievements and leadership of students enrolled in Connecticut’s community, technical and junior colleges. Rahteisha Pittman, Maria Petrario and Hira Haasan were named from GCC, and Rebecca DelValle and Alexis Christy represented HCC. DelValle, HCC’s PTK Chapter president, also earned a bronze Coca-Cola Scholars Award, and Christy was named a 2020 New Century Transfer Pathway Scholar as a top scoring student in the All-USA Academic Team competition, earning the highest score in the state.
“We are tremendously proud of these outstanding PTK scholars,” said Dr. Thomas G. Coley, Acting President Housatonic Community College and Regional President, CSCU Shoreline-West. “Earning Five-Star Chapter rankings and these many accolades highlight their dedication, drive, and their exceptional leadership.”
Caption For Photo Above: Phi Theta Kappa awards presented to Gateway Community College’s Alpha Xi Theta chapter.
Caption For Photo Right: PTK President for both Gateway Community College and the New England Region.
Caption For Photo Right: GCC’s Five-Star PTK Chapter officer team (L-R Susan Swirsky, Advisor; Tina Jay, VP of Marketing; Monica Maldonado, Executive VP; Kimberly Alvarez, VP of Fellowship; Nicole Fawell, VP of Records; Ivanna Figol, VP of Communication; Maria Petrario, VP of Fund Raising; Rahteisha (Teisha) Pittman, President; Dr. Paul Broadie, Past HCC & GCC President; Cara Case, Advisor)
Caption For Photo Right: HCC student Alexis Christy was named a 2020 New Century Transfer Pathway Scholar as a top scoring student in the All-USA Academic Team competition, earning the highest score in the state.
Caption For Photo Right: HCC’s Five-Star PTK Chapter President, Rebecca DelValle stands with her Coca-Cola Scholars and All-Connecticut Academic Team medals.